A prospective five-year follow-up of smokers who quit on their own

Timothy P. Carmody, Cheryl S. Brischetto, Diane K. Pierce, Joseph D. Matarazzo, William E. Connor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


A group of 104 ex-smokers, drawn from a stratified random sample of community-living, middle-class families, were followed prospectively over a 5-year period. Initially, a subset of 98 of these ex-smokers were interviewed regarding their experiences and attitudes toward cigarette smoking. A total of 93 (95%) of these 98 ex-smokers reported that they had successfully quit smoking without the help of any organization or health care professional. This 95% rate of self-generated cessation exceeds the reported national average of 70-80% for ex-smokers. A variety of factors including a general concern for health were influential in their decision to quit smoking and in their choice of strategies used. Over the 5-year period of this study, 95 of these 104 ex-smokers remained completely abstinent. The implications of these findings are discussed in terms of future efforts to prevent smoking in children and to promote smoking cessation in adults.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)101-109
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Education Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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